The river we followed to the glacier
(Jan) Breakfasted in a cafe along with most of the rest of Fox Glacier
population. Set us up for a 5 hour tramp to the foot of the glacier itself. we followed the road up and some first before back-tracking and taking the other side of the valley up through the 'jungle/rainforest' to chalet lookout. This was the route we did last night for a 'gentle walk' but didn't manage to finish as it got dark. This decided us to book an extra night but in the budget accomodation rather than the fancy(ish) room we're in now.
The walk was beautiful and the view at the end breathtaking. We actually managed to see some birds here (silver-eye & fan-tail); so far, they've all been hidden by the dense foliage but their tropical sounding calls are inticing.
A distant view
The little Alpine flowers are very sweet but it is all a real strange mixture - the glades and water falls could be England/UK and are reminiscent of places such as Betws-y-coed but in amongst all the deciduous looking woods there are palm trees and tree ferns which give the game away.
The glacier was awesome when you take in the whole scale of the thing both physically and chronologically. It would have been lovely to see it in full sun, especially the blue ice.
Last night we saw our first possum and glow-worms. We're going back later tonight for a closer look. Found we've got a nest of kea behind the hostel. So that's what wakes us up.
PS The glow worms were magical. We did 2 circuits of the woods as we wanted a second look. Saw another possum too